Monday, March 17, 2008

Loss Prevention. . .And Maybe Saving the Next Cindy Bischof

So, today I am working on a bunch of presentations for upcoming workshops and talks, etc. -- specifically I am working on a particular presentation for loss prevention and recovery professionals (security professionals) on dealing with domestic violence as a workplace issue. These professionals are on the front lines when it comes to workplace safety/workplace violence issues, so they are often the first to recognize how much domestic violence affects a company. They are the "go to" people on this, and they really understand it.

At any rate, I am highlighting the risk assessment portion of the training and the sorts of things that these professionals will want to keep in mind when working with employees who are victims of domestic violence.

For example, we know that the most dangerous time for a victim of domestic violence tends to be when the person is leaving or has left the relationship (in cases of homicide related to domestic violence, 75% of the time, the victim has been in the process of leaving or has left the relationship), we know that stalking behavior increases risk (including stalking at the workplace), and other such behaviors.

So as I am preparing this presentation, I see this heartbreaking article from the Chicago Tribune,0,6195124.story about a woman named Cindy Bischof and about all of the things that happened to her before her ex-boyfriend shot her dead in the parking lot of her office on March 7.

And the "risk assessment" bullet points regarding the behavior of Cindy's ex-boyfriend are eerily similar to the "risk assessment" bullet points for my presentation. Except that she is a person who is now dead and her family is grieving her loss. It is no longer academic. It is real life and real loss.

And so I am hoping as I talk with these great loss prevention professionals that we are able to further the work employers can do to help keep workplaces safe. And people safe. . and alive.

It is really hard for me to know that there is something people can do - that employers can do - to help and maybe keep things like this from happening -- and that only 15% of employers in the United States are doing it. (Of course, there is no guarantee, but we can certainly be more, right?)

If you want to do something as an employer, go to and learn more. That is why CAEPV is here -- to help employers address this issue.

And real loss prevention? Well that is not about products or inventory. . .that is about saving lives. And maybe helping to save the next Cindy Bischof.

1 comment:

Michael Bischof said...

Kim - I appreciate the fact that you have brought attention to my sister's story. I would like to keep a dialogue with you in the coming days/weeks/months as we crusade for change together. For now, feel free to visit


Michael Bischof
(Cindy's brother)